Interviews: What you need to know

Updated: Dec 26, 2021

Do you find yourself getting nervous at the prospect of an interview? You’re not alone ?— and millions of other people just like you are constantly looking for easier ways to ace this nerve-wracking part of the job hunt.

But what is it that makes an interview with a prospective employer so cringeworthy? Aside from the fact that money and livelihoods are on the line, it’s always awkward to meet new people while attempting to give a good first impression.

And as everyone knows, one mistake or social faux pas can be enough to tank the entire interview from the get-go. But don’t fret: There are ways you can make the interview process less stressful and pass with flying colors. Here’s how.

Put your best foot forward

A job interview is only as scary as you let it become, so approaching the situation with a positive attitude is one of the best pre-emptive steps you can take. Before meeting with any prospective employer, always remember the following mantras:

  • This is not the only interview I’ll ever go on.

  • Even if I don’t succeed, I will learn something valuable to help me with my next one.

Treat every single interview like it’s part of your overall job hunt, not a zero-sum game. If you interview with one hundred potential employers and only end up with one callback, that’s still a victory for you!

Plus, if you start off your interviews with a positive attitude, it won’t go unnoticed. Confidence goes hand-in-hand with professionalism, and both are qualities that are highly desirable in any worker.

Dress for success

This step may sound superficial, but it’s far more important than you might realize. A well-dressed candidate demonstrates to an employer that they take the role (and potential job offer) seriously.

On the flip-side, someone who shows up to an interview like they just rolled out of bed does not give off the same impression. In the mind of an employer, an unprepared candidate doesn’t seem like the kind of person who’d care if they were turned down.

To look your best for any job interview, make sure to keep a set of business casual clothes at the ready — and take care to keep them clean. At the same time, keep your hair, nails, brows, and beard (if you have one) trimmed and neat.

Some jobs are fine with a bit more scruffiness, but it’s better to look well-groomed when making your first impression. On the off chance, they’re not into the lumberjack look, you’ll be much safer.

There’s more where that came from

As we said in the first step, this will probably not be your only interview. So when you finally shake hands with your prospective employer and introduce yourself, relax and put on a good face.

Before you start, it may also be a good idea to do some research about the employer. That way, you have plenty to talk about when your time comes to meet.

Be yourself, and use your best attributes from both your employment history and education to your advantage. Emphasize how enthusiastic you are to become part of this company or organization, and why you would make an asset to the team.

Follow these steps, and you’ll have a much easier time with each passing interview. Treat each one you go on as a step in the right direction, and make note of what you think you did well on each time you finish.

Before long, you’ll be well on your way towards the job you’ve been chasing. All it takes is confidence, self-assurance, and a professional sheen to how you present yourself. You’ll be surprised how easily everything else falls into place.

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